Brain Food

Literally.

I think the biggest obstacle for me is . . . me. Which really means my brain. I have dealt with depression since my youngest son was born. Maybe before then, I don’t know, but postpartum is when it became a Problem with a capital P.

News has been coming this past year that a Mediterranean diet is really good for depression. That’s kind of a misleading term, I know. And they do include specific guidelines for what they mean by this term.

I have been struggling to find recipes that meet my needs. I bought a book by Dr. Drew Ramsey, and I love what he has to say about brain food. But I looked at his recipes and made a face. Searching online yields a lot of “healthy” versions which call for low-fat dairy and skimp on the olive oil.

I finally found a meal plan, by a Greek dietician that lays out a nice set of daily options. For me, by myself, this diet sounds wonderful. Minimal meat, pasta allowed, veggies are soooo tasty with fat. I just don’t know how my boys are going to do with it. We’ll see. I’ll probably end up serving a little more chicken and fish than suggested to keep them happy. I can also serve them meat and treat my main dish as their side. So far, so good though. I made a very simple pasta dish that I was afraid would be too “plain.” Just spaghetti noodles, olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. It was a huge hit and that was a pleasant surprise. I can serve that with a salad and crusty bread and that’s great (and cheap!)

But then there are days like today. I had some stress and panic this afternoon and when it was resolved, even though all was well, I needed chocolate to calm down. I still haven’t figured out how to not do that.

I walked one day this week and haven’t walked again. But one is better than zero. 😂

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Well . . .

I’ve sort of segued into counting calories more than points. The other day I tracked all of my points and I was at 40 at the end of the day. I thought it was kind of crazy because I didn’t feel like I had overeaten at all (even tho I knew what had added so many points.) So I calculated the calories and I was at 1400. And that kind of annoyed me. I understand that the program is designed to encourage you to eat “clean” but I feel like they kind of go overboard with the points for “dirty” food. And their idea of dirty also doesn’t sync with mine. I had an Amy’s vegetarian pot pie one day, 15 points!

I don’t know, I guess I am just not as into this “clean” business as some people. I don’t find a vegetarian pot pie so offensive. To me that’s a perfectly respectable, pretty healthful lunch and apparently on WW it’s egregious. I can’t seem to find a way to balance what I want to eat with what WW thinks I should eat. And if what I wanted to eat was terrible, I would appreciate the shove in the right direction. But I really don’t eat poorly, I maintain my weight and all of my health markers except my blood pressure are excellent. (The blood pressure is genetic. We all get it in my family, no matter our weight. I’m still hopeful I can get it down with my weight but I don’t blame it on my eating.)

So anyway, all that is to say I’ve kind of migrated away from the points. I talked to my husband about it today, I feel bad for wasting money but he understood and he has the attitude that if it taught me something, it wasn’t money wasted. I didn’t really fully make this decision until this evening, which is a little frustrating because I just shopped for food and skipped over some items I would consider low calorie but were relatively high in points. Oh well.

So that’s where I am at. I haven’t checked my weight in a while. I had gone back up a little over Christmas but was back down last I checked.

I feel OK with my decision. I don’t consider it a failure because I didn’t quit, I just transitioned into a different way of tracking. Now, this I must stick with! I might not lose as quickly but that’s OK. I set my calorie goal to be maintenance for my goal weight. That should serve me well for now!

Whoop whoop!

Weight Watchers is still going fine. I already hit my first goal of reaching the next middle number. 189.8 haha but still, look at that 8 in the middle!  I’m still hungry but it’s not terrible, I think for whatever reason, being on a program psychologically keeps me in line. When I am just winging it I can tell myself that I am really hungry and should eat.

I have a lot of mini goals in mind to keep myself focused on something close at all times. 136 seems a million miles away. I already hit that new middle number, next up is 10 pounds gone, then 179, then 20 pounds gone, etc. 164 is also a goal because it indicates a BMI of just overweight and no longer obese. 136 is a normal BMI and my end goal.

Pulled out the ol’ Wii Fit tonight. I am going to test steps with my Misfit and see if they register. Then I can do steps on it while I watch TV, which will be nice.  I’ve often considered getting up every hour and walking for 10 minutes or so but I don’t really want to head outside for that, I’ve had skin cancer. Plus the weather’s turning cold and when it’s done it will immediately become hot.  Haha, welcome to Texas.

 

When you’re not ready!

So, I knew this week would be more of a trial run than an official start and I was certainly right. It’s rough to be hungry without a lot of zero or low point foods around. Heck, even my granola bars are 4 points, for the love of Pete. I have managed to do OK, by using the weekly points, but then I calculated tonight’s dinner – 27 points!

I decided to go ahead and make it for a couple of reasons. #1 I need to use up that food. #2 Although it is high in calories, I am aware of how many calories are in it and everything else I have eaten today. So points-wise, I will be at 39 points for the day, but calories-wise, I’ll be at about 1100 which seems a little odd, yes? Well, I get the “game” so to speak, the points are designed to make me choose better foods, I get that and I’m on board, which is why I signed up. But for this day, this meal, screw it, I’m making and eating it and I am understanding that calorie-wise, I really have not overeaten for the day. I grocery shop tomorrow and after that, things will be more in line.

(In case you’re wondering what could be 27 points, it’s crockpot swedish meatballs. And they are tasty.  But they have like 600 calories for a serving.)

So…

I have started this blog and then deleted it so many times. And here we go again. I am sure most successful people have many failures under their belt, right? RIGHT?!  Heh. I make no apologies for trying again and again. The biggest failure would be giving up.

So what transpired yesterday was someone linked to a GMA clip. They were discussing someone who appeared briefly in the clip, not the content. But the content was the new Weight Watchers program. And I just decided to sign up. I used to say that it’s just a fancy way to count calories, and I still believe that. However, I like the idea of, OK, my god, you’re hungry have an orange even if you’ve reached your limit. And it reminds me to not get too anal and caught up in the numbers because they tell you – if you don’t know the points, guess. If you went over on points, you have some extra for the week. If you don’t use all of your points today you can tack up to 4 of them on for tomorrow.

Also, there’s the fact that one of my favorite websites for recipes, Skinnytaste, has WW points on her recipes. She updates them as the program changes but from what I am reading, most foods have the same points, just some went down in points. So I can still use her recipes as is for now, if there’s any discrepancy it would be too many points and that’s fine.

Anyway, I started today which has not gone well. My husband took me out to lunch and I ordered this burrito bowl which I thought was a good choice. Then I came home and looked up the nutrition info to plug into the points calculator. 19! I don’t know how that’s even possible. I mean, yes, it was 600 calories but that shouldn’t equal 80% of my day? I am not sweating it, I am new to this and I’m ok with taking a few days to figure it out.